Delia Locke


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1882. road crossing, about one-half mile from the Lake. Here we were set down with all our things, between four and five o'clock and we then began to consider how everything was to be got to the Lake, for it was all up hill, and quite steep, too. I could not walk, and even if I could, how could the baggage be got up? Howard and Mr. Pascoe told Ida and me, that if we would sit there upon the rocks they would go up and see what could be done. Presently they returned drawing an empty buggy after them. They had found it at the Lake House, situated on the shore of the lake, and took it to draw me and the things up in, as the people were all absent. So I got into the buggy and was drawn up in grand style, with a part of our baggage, not without difficulty, for the hill is steep and very rocky. Being landed, the men went back for the tent and rest of the things, and they got back in season to pitch the tent in a nice place near the Hotel, on the shore above the road, which winds along close by the Lake. We found a nice flat rock large enough for our table, and ate our supper before dark, and then sat around our camp fire awhile, which here so high up the mountains is comfortable. We are 6000 feet above the sea, and in sight of one of the summits of the Sierras, which is 1000 feet higher. The Lake House is kept by Mr. Riddle, a Kentuckian, and veteran of the Mexican war. He has a housekeeper, a widow with two little two girls - all made us a friendly call this eve. The lake itself is clear as crystal - a circumstance which doubtless suggested its name - and is simply a basin about a half mile on each side - triangular in shape, and each side about the same length. High rocky mountains form its banks on one side, the pine forest on another, and the Hotel clearing on another. The stars are beautiful here tonight, and the air clear and bracing.

July 22. Saturday. Howard and Mr. Pascoe made a kind of booth for themselves, and far from our tent, covered it with branches and then covered the floors of both thin house and ours with fragrant spruce boughs, and laid our beds upon them.

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1882. It has been uncomfortable windy here today, and we have thought, if it is to continue so, we must move over farther from the lake. but we prefer to remain here, both for company and she splendid view of the lake. Here we can see all who pass upon the highway, and campers often stop here for the night. Mr. Riddle has a good boat, and Howard and Ida took it and went on the lake fishing, but caught nothing. Mr. Riddle has no cows, and we have been wondering how we should get milk, which I find so necessary to my comfort. But the Lord has supplied is in an unexpected manner. As we sat and talked about it, along came a man by the name of Kelly - an old Irishman who keeps sheep and cattle up here and when we stated to him our want, he kindly told us if we would drive up a cow with young calf, we might keep up the calf and milk the cow. So Howard has done it, and Mr. Riddle gave us permission to keep she calf in his coral. The cow gives a nice mess, enough for us, and some occasionally for Mr. Riddle. He has loaned us an old table of rough boards, which we have covered with some oil cloth we brought, also an old, home-manufactured arm chair, so we have changed the place of our camp fire, and now have our table and chair under the shade of the booth, and the very large pines, against which it is built, and it is more comfortable than the flat rock, which being in the heat of the sun, we could not use at noon time. We are glad to keep in the shade through the middle of the day, for the heat of the sun is intense, even at this elevation.

July 23. Sabbath. A very quiet day. We had our little S. School in the booth this morning, where we always have morning prayers. It is still very windy, and we are getting much burned with it and the heat of the sun. Our nearest Post office is Cisco, three miles by railroad track, and Howard went up there and carried my letters, one to the home folks and postals to Addie Smart and Alice Andrew. When he returned, he brought one postals from home.

Date Original

January 1880

Dates Covered


Circa Date

circa 1880-1884


Original dimensions: 22 x 34 cm.

Resource Identifier



Holt-Atherton Special Collections, University of the Pacific Library

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Delia Locke, diaries, women, diarist, California, Locke-Hammond Family Papers, Lockeford, CA, Dean Jewett Locke, rural life, rural California, 19th Century, church, temperance organizations, Mokelumne River Ladies' Sewing Circle, temperature recordings, journal